How to Have Your Own Photo Site for Under $100

How bad do you want your own photo site?

photo site - caught eating in thailandCaught eating in Thailand (but at least I had my own photo site!)

It doesn’t take me 3 cafe lattes to tell you how important it is to have your own website or blog and not base your business on someone else’s concept.

If you’re building your photo business on Blogspot, Tumblr, or FlickR, Smugmug or PhotoShelter (some are excellent, no doubt) then I’d carefully consider acting right now to grab your own name and hosting and start afresh.

(IN a lot of cases you’ll be able to transfer it over to your new site anyway).

The issue with building YOUR business on someone else’s brand is that at you could potentially lose it all…

That’s exactly what happened to a popular blogger who goes by the name Bohemea. When Tumblr shut down her account in June, she lost five years of work — more than 100,000 posts across two separate blogs.

Mind you the reason Tumblr shut down her blog was apparently because they received complaints from copyright holders who said Bohemea had used photographs without permission.

Points to note: a) you don’t do that. B) you don’t go through life with a fear based mentality. (Diggin’ the abundance mindset here).

Having said that…

Wouldn’t it be easier to build your brand and HQ and photo business on your own domain? One that you own, with hosting that YOU pay for. Why wouldn’t you?

build a good domain nameAbove image (and quote below) from Show Your Work

Especially if you’re serious about creating a business – or at least creating something that inspires and moves and helps people in their life.

Carving out a space for yourself online, somewhere where you can express yourself and share your work, is still one of the best possible investments you can make with your time. — Andy Baio

(And believe me, photography can definitely do that).

A Photo Site for Under $100

By all means get your photos up on Pinterest, FlickR and Tumblr etc (as that’s where folks hang out and where you’ll build an audience and friends) but at the same time build your photo business HQ on your own domain.

You can do both. For like way under $100.

In fact, here’s what it’ll cost you in a nutshell:

Points to note about that: Specific WordPress hosting is not essential but should you choose to go with it it’ll cost you $12.49 the first month which means $150/year which means… my numbers are ALL wrong!

Let’s Smash Them Numbers

Host your site @ $7/month x 12 months = $84

1 x domain name registered = $12

= $96.00

With a few dollars left for another caffe Latte. (I prefer de-caf. Weird, right?)

It’s Rather Uncomplicated

You get your domain (that way YOU own it), crank up the hosting (somewhere for your website / blog to live) and I think it’s like 5 clicks and BANG you’ve got WordPress up and running.

Then of course you have to add the content – images – videos – talk / write about your thing – what inspires you and what gets you jumping out of bed in the morning.

Thomas Hawk does it real well here using a simple WordPress theme and heck I’m doing it as we speak. You can still play with 500PX and Facebook and Tumblr and FlickR to your heart’s content.

By all means put your work (images) up on those sites because we know people go there to see stuff and get inspiration – but at the same time build your little funky HQ on that $12 domain and get it hosted.

They’re all good business expenses you can claim tax back on too.

And man, if you don’t know what domain to register hit me up. I suggest going with the .com and keeping it short as possible. If you can still register your own name or your business name then do it.

It can be that simple.

If you let it.

caught waiting in MalaysiaCaught waiting in Malaysia

Don’t wait. Get your business started on your own terms and put that energy and time and love into something that YOU own that will last and inspire and influence people.

What do you think? Do you really want your own photo site or what?